A man appearing to try entering an Alabama elementary school is shot and killed by a school resource officer
By Jamiel Lynch, Tina Burnside and Jarrod Wardwell, CNN
(CNN) -- One person was shot and killed by a police officer outside of an Alabama elementary school Thursday afternoon, Etowah County Sheriff Jonathan Horton said during a news conference.
Horton said the man looked suspicious, appeared to be trying to get into the school, and was looking inside vehicles near the school.
The Alabama Law Enforcement Agency (ALEA) is investigating the incident.
In a news release, ALEA said that the individual was seen trying to make forcible entry into a marked Rainbow City patrol vehicle near Walnut Park Elementary School in Gadsden. A school resource officer made contact with the individual and attempted to stop him, the release said.
An altercation ensued in which the individual attempted to take the officer's firearm. The officer was able to call for backup and responding officers shot the individual who was pronounced dead at the scene, according to the release.
No children at the school were hurt in the incident, which happened right outside one of the doors to the school, Horton said.
Praising the work of the school resource officer, Horton also highlighted the work the district has done in light of the shooting in Uvalde, Texas.
"Our schools, especially after ... what's happened in Texas, we have one of the largest school resource officers programs in Etowah County, preaching that these doors stay locked. That the individual was not able to make it inside the school," he said.
"From the school resource officer's standpoint -- he did exactly what should be done. He went straight to the threat, he confronted it and he dealt with it. It ended in, unfortunately, the death of the suspect, but that's the safest alternative. To keep that threat out of that school," he added.
The school resource officer was transported to the hospital to be treated for minor injuries he sustained during the altercation, Horton said.
It is not known if the suspect was armed.
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